Measure for Measure

Andrej Tcheutou

Measure for measure

The action of the play takes place in Vienna. The main characters are the duke of Vienna, Vincentio his cousin Angelo, Mariana fiance of Angelo, Escalus an old lord, Claudio a young lord, Juliet Claudios lover, Isabella Claudios sister and Lucio a fellow traveller.
At the beginning of the story Vincentio wants to leave the town for a while. He asks Angelo to take his office for this time.
After Vincentio has left the court he goes into a cloister to find out the behavior of the every person in his absence. Claudio has the right to change all laws in his estimation, one of these laws is that no one should have an affair with a woman before he is married with her. Claudio and Juliet fall in love nevertheless and get a child. Angelo gets to know this and lets the two lock up in a prison, Claudio is sentenced to the death. Claudio meets Lucio on the way to the prison, he tells him that he goes to his sister Isabella who is just included into a convent. She shall go to Angelo and keep on at him so he falls off with the law. After that, Lucio goes to Isabella and tells her the situation. Isabella isn't convinced of himself that she can do this. Angelo however wants not to abandon from his law. Angelo tells her that she shall come by midnight to his garden and sleep with him. If she loses her innocence at him, her brother free. Isabella goes to Claudio to the prison and asks him about her behaviour. He says she shall devote herself to him. Isabella has grown and still only wanted his death. Vincentio comes mediates the quarrel by suggesting a plan. The plan is, that Angelo’s fiance Mariana (spurned Mariana because of one to low dowry) goes instead of Isabella to Angelo in the night.
Next morning at the prison, the prison worth Provost gets a letter from Claudio. In the letter is written that the two prisoners Claudio and Bernardino hang until four o’clock and Claudio's head should be send to Angelo. A prisoner died this night, therefore they could send the head of the dead prisoner out to Angelo. After that, the prison worth could transfer Claudio and Bernardino into another dungeon. Later on, Vincentio writes a letter to Angelo in which he informs him about his return tomorrow and that he should pick him up from the town gate together with Escalus. By the time Vincentio wants to go to the cloister again, he meets Lucio and tells him what a coward the duke allegedly is. Now Vincentio has put on as duke again and is received by the people.
Isabella falls in front of him on the knees and tells him about her pain that Angelo has done to her. However Angelo denies everything. By the time Mariana comes Angelo becomes nervous, Vincentio goes away and leaves the further proceedings to Angelo. Angelo becomes sour again and wants to put the people that are accusing him into prison. Vincentio returns as monk and is still accused to have incited the women to accuese Angelo.
As Vincentio descreases the habit everybody is surprised. Vincentio takes everything to the right laws and oblige Angelo, the traitor, to marry Mariana. Lucio who impregnated a whore must marryed her now.
Now there are no problems anymore and everybody is glad. Everybody has got what he deserved.

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